[time-nuts] Y2K again: Tuesday 03:14:07 GMT, January 19, 2038

Matthew Smith matt at smiffytech.com
Sun Apr 20 19:37:58 EDT 2008

Quoth Brooke Clarke at 2008-04-21 04:59...
> This is the rollover date for "C" language date functions that count the 
> seconds since 00:00:00 1 Jan 1970 with a signed 32 bit integer.
> One second after after 03:14:07 GMT, January 19, 2038 is in 1901.

This has been known about for some time - there is even a reference to 
it in the book 'Standard C Date/Time Library' by Lance Latham, published 
some 10 years ago (preparing for Y2K).  See section 1.8.5, 'Other 
Flavors of Doomsday'.  I would add that this is actually quite an 
interesting book in some of the background that it gives on various 
temporal orders.

For most of us, the Unix date problem will be a non-issue as we will 
either a) be retired or b) have passed away by then, making it an SEP 
(Someone Else's Problem) ;-)

On the subject of books (not meaning to hijack your thread, Brooke,) I'm 
about two-thirds of the way through 'History of the Hour - Clocks and 
Modern Temporal Orders' by Gerhard Dohrn-van Rossum.  Despite the rather 
dry-sounding title, I am finding this very engaging reading and would 
recommend it most wholeheartedly to my fellow temporophiles.



Matthew Smith
Smiffytech - Technology Consulting & Web Application Development
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